Sir Richard Branson goals to turn into an astronaut this weekend when he acts as Virgin Galactic’s “Astronaut 001” on its “Unity 22” mission.
Scheduled for 9:00 am EDT on Sunday, July 11, 2021 and as a result of be webcast dwell on VirginGalactic.com, Twitter, YouTube and Fb, Unity 22 would be the twenty second take a look at flight of the house tourism firm’s Virgin Spaceship Unity (VSS Unity) supersonic jet-plane.
Right here’s every little thing you want to know concerning the VSS Unity spaceplane:
How does Virgin Galactic’s house tourism flight work?
It’s an “air launch.”
After taking-off on a runway at Spaceport America close to Reality or Penalties in New Mexico whereas strapped to the Virgin Mothership Eve (VMS Eve), VSS Unity detaches at 52,000 ft. and burns its engine for 63 seconds to achieve house about 55 miles up.
It then re-enters Earth’s ambiance and touches down again on the runway.
How a lot does it value to fly on Virgin Galactic?
With 600 seats offered and a wait-list numbering within the 1000’s, Virgin Galactic shouldn’t be at present promoting tickets.
They value round $250,000, however are anticipated to turn into extra inexpensive when flights get underway.
It’s rumored that Justin Bieber And Leonardo DiCaprio are among the many ticket-holders.
What number of seats are there in Virgin Galactic’s supersonic aircraft?
The cabin is designed to take eight individuals, together with two pilots—Dave Mackay and Michael Masucci—to the sting of house.
Nonetheless, six will journey on this take a look at flight.
What’s it like inside Virgin Galactic’s spacecraft?
Designed to recline to assist passengers deal with the G- forces on enhance and re-entry, the cabin additionally acts as an “astronaut float zone” when in zero gravity.
Seat again screens join passengers to dwell flight information, automated temper lighting adjustments in every flight part and there are 12 cabin home windows to stare upon Earth from.
There are additionally 16 cameras to supply HD video and photographs and a big mirror in order that passengers can see themselves floating.
What are Virgin Galactic’s spacesuits like?
Beneath Armour has designed Virgin Galactic’s astronaut spacesuits, in addition to the material used within the the cabin seats.
The spacesuit weights solely 1kg, consisting of flight-grade knitted materials optimized for consolation in all phases of flight, equivalent to “enhance,” when the forces press the pilots backwards into their seats. The pilot spacesuits additionally embody the Virgin Galactic pilot wings emblem.
How excessive does Virgin Galactic go?
About 55 miles/88 km, which is above what the Federal Aviation Administration—who simply licensed Virgin Galactic to fly prospects to house—outline as the sting of house.
It’s going to take VSS Unity about 63 seconds of rocket-burn to get there.
Does Virgin Galactic truly go to house?
There’s one other measure of the sting of house known as the Kármán Line—about 62 miles/100km up—that’s the goal for house tourism rival firm Blue Origin’s flights.
Anticipate to listen to loads of chat about “precisely the place is house?” and far “my-spacecraft-goes-higher-than-yours” bravado when Jeff Bezos takes his firm’s rocket-propelled first crewed mission on July 20, 2021 … although Blue Origin’s expertise lasts solely 11 minutes.
How lengthy does Virgin Galactic keep in house?
Weightlessness—and an opportunity to look again at Earth’s curvature set towards the blackness of house—will final about six minutes.
Your complete expertise, nonetheless, lasts for about 2.5 hours, from take-off to touchdown.
When will Virgin Galactic start flying house vacationers?
The aim of Unity 22 is to check the consolation, the weightless expertise and the views of Earth that the spaceship delivers forward of deliberate non-public missions in 2022.
Earlier than that, two extra take a look at flights are deliberate.
Wishing you clear skies and extensive eyes.